NC student can continue to wear nose ring to class

By TOM BREEN | June 6, 2011 | 6:14 PM EDT

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina high school student will be able to wear a nose ring to class as long as she remains a member of a religious group that practices body modification.

Officials with the Johnston County Schools said Monday they're dropping their appeal of a federal judge's order allowing freshman Ariana Iacono (eye-uh-KOHN'-oh) to attend class with the nose piercing.

The school dress code forbids facial piercings. But Iacono belongs to the Church of Body Modification. The group includes piercings and tattoos as elements of its religious practice.

The state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union says the resolution is a victory for religious freedom.